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Amicus bites the bullet to acquire armour firm

By Margaret Canning

Venture capitalists have said they may create jobs at a Northern Ireland manufacturer of body armour after acquiring the company as a going concern.

Amicus Capital Partners paid an undisclosed sum to take over Global Armour in Lisburn, which makes bullet and stab resistant body armour for police and security forces.

Global Armour in Lisburn is the company’s headquarters for the European and American markets.

Another base in South Africa serves markets in the Far East. An agreement in principle for Amicus to acquire the South Africa operation is in place.

Amicus Capital Partners, which has gone into the deal with funding partner Shield Capital said it was committed to significant investment in the Lisburn operation, where a total of 45 people are employed.

Dr Terry McCartney of Amicus Capital, the new chairman of Global Armour, said: “We are very excited about this opportunity to invest in a growing company in Northern Ireland.

“The investment made by Amicus will lead to further growth and development of unique and technologically advanced products for customers across the globe.

“We are able to offer an unparalleled range of ballistic and dual purpose body armour, ballistic helmets, armour plates, anti riot equipment and other specialist products.”

He added: “There will be no job cuts and we could be creating more jobs in coming weeks.”

While Amicus does not have other armour companies in its portfolio at present, Dr McCartney said it had experience of the sector.

Previous high profile investments by Amicus include Adria, Glenaden Shirts and Glenmachen Healthcare.

Dr McCartney spent 15 years as managing director and then chairman of Adria.

Global Armour was formed three years ago when the Global Armour Group acquired body armour manufacturer Highmark Manufacturing Company, which went into liquidation in 2005.

Among the products Global Armour supplies to police, military and emergency services worldwide are body armour, hard armour plates, riot control equipment, ballistic helmets, protective gloves, equipment carriage vests, ballistic shield, protective eyewear, face shields and goggles, bomb blankets and boots.

Belfast Telegraph

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